When the Market is hot - TURN UP THE HEAT

The evidence is pretty clear - the market has been pretty hot.

All around us we see sales figures rolling along. Real estate sales figures, retail sales, exports, all running at highs and an environment that exudes confidence.

What a change around from even 12 months ago when the general sales sentiment was negative. Less people in sales, especially real estate, and a rash of closures and mergers as people sought strategies to survive.

In a tough business environment like that people reflect hard on their business and create strategies to ensure they continue in business - they survive.

In this mode people look for new ideas or simply knuckle down and do the hard yards. This is evidenced by items such as:

• Mergers and acquisitions (Watch for more of these)
• Innovative marketing
• New products
• Improving their skills with training
• Back to Basics Budgeting and cost cutting
• People leaving sales
• Revisiting existing technology and now learning how to use it
• Prospecting thoroughly, widely and frequently
• Working longer hours
• Re-branding or Brand refreshment
• New alliances
• New Strategies
• New personnel

People simply try harder and all this hard work without the great profits and sales figures can be simply demoralizing. However there are personal goals, integrity, passion for success, future visions, overdrafts, lifestyle etc which all fuel the desire to get out there each day and give it a go again.

One must never over-look, that no matter what the market conditions, someone is winning, growing, prospering, and taking market share. Their lesson is simple- no matter what the market is, keep turning up the heat.

And when the Hot Market comes along and sales and cash flow get easier, isn't it tempting to ease off the throttle?

Now is the time. When the market is hot- turn up the heat. That's what the real champions do.
All the hard work to get through the tough times needs the rewards a strong market can bring.
The question to ask your self is: "Am I getting all I could from this market?"

When the rewards start to come, profits increase, and success allows some treats and your financial position improves, it could be tempting to take things a bit easier.

The problem with a strong market is that everyone gets on the game. Those that worked through the tough times, now have more competition, as new players enter the market. Those that lacked the stick-ability, skills or financial reserves to survive in tough times now come back. Now is the time to make it hard for them by turning up the heat.

Yes when the initial reaction might be to relax, it's time to really make a go for it.

So what are some things I could be doing in this market to make sure I don't just make more sales, but to make sure I protect and increase my market share?

Prospect more intensely
Increase the number of people you talk with daily
Increase you database numbers and frequency
Increase your daily phone calls by 30-50%
Take no-one for granted - more people are calling your contacts now
Don't sell the best products too fast - get maximum value and exposure
Don't discount - true professionals don't.
Everything is negotiable except your fee.
Don't cut cornersIf you can't cope, hand it over before it goes to the opposition
Invest in quality - up-grade your promotional material. If you haven't been using colour then it's time
Get great photographs of YOU on your promotional material
If you use colour use a professional designer to give you a lift in profile
Increase the size of promotional programmes
Recruit more people, but train them superbly
If you are in real estate, make sure you promote your properties widely. Don't just take the first deal.

The Buyers Market belief that “The first offer is the best offer” is dead in this market. Your job is to find all the buyers, and then see what is the most one of them will pay will pay

Modify internal practices to make sure we are leaving no customers over-looked.
Look after your Advocates - the people who feed you business
Old clients are being visited by the new players - call on at least one a day
Ask for business - don't expect it.
Busy times still require a close in the sale. Don't be an order taker. That way the buyer dictates. In a sellers market that's leaving yourself short.

So when it all feels as though the sales are coming a bit easier - don't stop the marketing or prospecting systems. Do exactly the opposite. Do it harder, more often and more skill-fully. That way you will make even more sales/money and not lose market share.

When the market is like it's been, it really is time to reap the rewards for all the hard work you put in during the tough times. Perhaps if you do this and feel the rewards, you will be encouraged to do it this way all the time, and not suffer in the downturns. That way you will be a sales champion too.

IAN KEIGHTLEY


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